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DATE News (chronologically)
04/23/11
British F3

First British Formula 3 win for Fortec’s Foresti
Lucas Foresti came of age as a driver in the Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series this afternoon at Oulton Park, the Brazilian leading Round 4 of the championship all the way from pole position to checkered flag. The Mercedes-powered Fortec Motorsport driver increased his advantage on every lap and broke the circuit lap record for good measure.

It was a brilliant showing from the 18-year-old, who claimed his first British Formula 3 podium finish only last weekend at Monza. His countryman, the championship leader Felipe Nasr, placed second ahead of his Carlin team-mates Jazeman Jaafar and Carlos Huertas. T-Sport’s Bart Hylkema overcame early class leader Kotaro Sakurai to win the Rookie division.

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04/23/11
nassprint

Mayfield's Dogs Attack Mail Carrier
Former NASCAR star Jeremy Mayfield always finds ways to get into trouble
When a mail carrier tried to deliver a package too big for Jeremy Mayfield's mailbox, she tried to drop it off at the home's front door, but when she went to the house, police say she was attacked by five dogs. The pit bull-lab mix dogs are currently in quarantine at the Catawba County Animal Shelter. Firefighters said it was at former NASCAR star Jeremy Mayfield's home where mail carrier Mary Bolton was attacked.

Firefighters said she was hospitalized with bite marks and cuts all over her legs, arms and shoulders. Neighbors were stunned to hear news of the attack. Police have confirmed that Mayfield came outside to intervene, scooping up the badly injured carrier and taking her back inside the home.

The police chief in Catawba said the dogs are being quarantined for ten days because he is not sure they are up to date on rabies shots. No decision has been made yet on what will happen to the dogs or if anyone will face charges. WSOCtv.com

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04/23/11
f1

Domenicali: No 'magic wand' fix for Ferrari
For the 2nd year in a row Stefano Domenicali and his engineering team are clueless how to beat Red Bull.  You have to wonder how long before Ferrari gives him the axe
Ferrari Team Principal Stefano Domenicali is looking for the Maranello-based outfit to take 'a step in the right direction' in Turkey in two weeks time, although he knows there is unlikely to be a sudden change in the pecking order at Istanbul Park because all the other team will make a step forward as well.  In fact, if Ferrari's step isn't big enough they may actually move down the pecking order. The team has clearly lost its way since Michael Schumacher and his engineering team left Ferrari.

“This championship has not started the way we would have wanted or hoped for. Our car definitely needs to improve its performance, especially in qualifying. We must work very hard over the coming weeks, especially on the aerodynamics,” he stated.

“We know our problems can’t be solved by waving a magic wand, all in one go [though], especially as our rivals are not going to sit around twiddling their thumbs: all the same, we need to take a step in the right direction, right from the next race.”

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04/23/11
irl

Ten sponsors are signed for IndyCar Baltimore race
Although a title sponsor has yet to be found, ten companies have recently signed as secondary sponsors of the IndyCar Series’ inaugural Baltimore Grand Prix on Sept. 4.

Philadelphia-based transportation fuels provider Sunoco will be the official fuel partner and the official pit lane sponsor.

Maryland-based insurance company Geico has signed a deal to be the official insurance company of the race.

Serving as the race’s official airline is Air Tran Airlines.

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04/22/11
irl

Penske Drivers on Wanted List
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by Russell Mill

Comment
04/22/11
nassprint

Brian Keselowski to attempt next three races
Brian Keselowski will resume his driving duties in the #92 Dodge for the Sprint Cup race Richmond International Raceway. After suffering from emergency gallbladder surgery, Keselowski had to take a step back and recover. Keselowski was not able to drive at Bristol and had long time driver/friend Dennis Setzer step in and take over.

Keselowski was forced to withdraw from Auto Club Speedway and was not yet medically cleared to race at Martinsville. Once again Dennis Setzer stepped in and drove the #92. An unfortunate wreck during practice at Martinsville put the K-Automotive Motorsports #92 out of contention early that weekend the team had no backup car and contributed to withdrawing their entries from Texas and Talladega. K-Automotive Motorsports took that time to rebuild and regroup and are now ready to get back on the track and go racing.

Brian Keselowski has fully recovered and has been granted clearance by his doctors and NASCAR to return to his drivers seat in the #92 K-Automotive Motorsports Dodge. Plans are for Keselowski to drive Richmond, Darlington and Dover.

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04/22/11
nassprint

Kahne has surgery on knee again
Kasey Kahne had knee surgery again on Monday after re-tearing his meniscus. Kahne says the knee just about feels better now then it has the last month and that he will be driving at Richmond in The Sprint Cup race. Kahne has surgery on both knee's in November 2010 to clean up the area surrounding the knees.

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04/22/11
irl

IndyCar Long Beach TV Ratings
Versus last Sunday aired the Izod IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, averaging 323,000 viewers, down 34% from 490,000 viewers for the race last year, also on Versus.  Randy Bernard probably did not like it when we called Versus a noose around IndyCar's neck, but that's pretty much what it is.  Two races on Versus this year and both had significantly lower ratings.

As of September 1, 2010, there are an estimated 115.9 million television households in the United States. A single national ratings point represents one percent of the total number, or 1,159,000 households for the 2010–11 season.  Each rating point is usually worth 1.38 million viewers in America.  So 323,000 viewers = a national TV rating of 0.23 for Long Beach.

See related article.

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04/22/11
nassprint

NASCAR Talladega TV Ratings UPDATE Fox topped all sports telecasts last weekend with a 5.2 final Nielsen rating for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Aaron's 499 from Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday. That rating is the same compared to the same race last year.

04/18/11 NASCAR on FOX delivered a 4.6/11 share on Sunday for racing from Talladega. Yesterday's 4.6/11 is down -6% compared to last year's 4.9/11.

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04/22/11
fil

Peugeot names Indy Lights Champ as a reserve driver
Peugeot has signed Firestone Indy Lights champion Jean-Karl Vernay as its reserve driver for the Le Mans 24 Hours.

The 23-year-old Frenchman had hoped to graduate to IndyCar this year, and tested with the Conquest team during the winter, but could not put enough sponsorship together to buy a ride in IndyCar, which looks bad for IndyCar.

"We looked at a few of the discipline's rising stars with a good track record and decided to offer a test to Jean-Karl Vernay this week, said Peugeot Sport boss Olivier Quesnel.  "He has raced in a driver development series, in similar fashion to Sebastien Bourdais and Simon Pagenaud, in the United States in Indy Lights. He is young and fits the profile of our drivers. It's also a way of us preparing for the future."

Team manager Pascal Dimitri said, "Vernay had made a good impression when we tested him.".

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04/22/11
f1

Pirelli to ramp up tire markings for Turkey
(GMM)  Pirelli will color the entire sidewall of its 'option' tires in Turkey.  The move follows complaints that the original coloration of the 'Pirelli P Zero' branding - and even the subsequent addition of thin lines on the outer tread - made it hard for spectators to visibly differentiate the compound types at the first three races of 2011.

Pirelli motor sport director Paul Hembery said the soft 'option' compounds will be "far more visible" from Istanbul onwards.

"The colors will be full colors on the sidewall and it will look much more significant the amount of color we put in so the black can't get in the way when it's spinning," he said.

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04/22/11
f1

Williams share price plummets after disastrous start
(GMM)  Williams' share price has plummeted amid the famous British team's worst-ever start to a new formula one season.

The Oxfordshire based team floated co-owner and long time technical boss Patrick Head's shares on the Frankfurt market prior to the start of the 2011 championship.

The Guardian reports that the price is now 27 per cent lower.

The big loser is Dutch investor Cyrte, who bought 5 per cent of Williams.  It's share is now worth EUR 3.3 million less.

Sponsorship consultant Julian Cottam is pessimistic.

Read more & Comment...
04/22/11
irl

Octane works hard to appease Edmonton's racing fan base
Considering that it was less than 10 weeks ago that the promoters of Edmonton's resuscitated IndyCar race wheeled out its ticket campaign, sales have been humming along.

Francois Dumontier, the president of Octane Motorsports Events, figures 40 per cent of the tickets have been sold for the July 22-24 race, but did concede it will take some work to sell the next 60.

"So far, so good," Dumontier said on Wednesday.

Among his stops in Edmonton this week was a meeting with the Chamber of Commerce and Travel Alberta.

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04/22/11
lmes

Singer to help ACO on sportscar rules
Porsche design legend Norbert Singer is set to work on the regulations for the world’s most famous sports-car endurance race, the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Singer, who as senior engineer at Porsche led the design of famous race cars such as the 935 and the 956/962, has joined the Automobile Club de l’Ouest--organizer of the 24 Hours--as a consultant. He will be involved in the execution and enforcement of the existing rulebook and the formulation of future regulations.

“It is great to have someone of Norbert’s experience on board at the ACO,” said ACO sporting director Vincent Beaumesnil. “He has huge knowledge and a fantastic approach to performance analysis.”

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04/22/11
nassprint

Group seeks NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Iowa
A group of Iowans have banded together in hopes of bringing a NASCAR Sprint Cup race to the Iowa Speedway in Newton. The Green Flag Alliance, a coalition that includes Newton mayor Chaz Allen, says it's seeking to boost fan interest and sponsorship support in hopes of landing stock car's premier circuit.

The group says it's the perfect time for the Speedway to host a Sprint Cup race after landing two lower-tier NASCAR Nationwide races for 2011.

The group says that analysis from other markets indicates that a Sprint Cup race can generate as much as $150 million to the local economy.

The Iowa Speedway will host the Nationwide Series on May 22 and August 6. The open-wheel IndyCar series visits the track on June 25. WXOW News

Comment
04/22/11
irl

IndyCar still playing favoritism to Penske's drivers UPDATE #2 A reader asks, Dear AutoRacing1.com, Did the fact that both Brian Barnhart and Al Unser Jr. previously worked for Penske Racing have anything to do with the non-penalty calls on Helio Castroneves in Long Beach.  Some people say Penske controls IndyCar like a puppet.  Jeff Schmultz, Portland, Oregon

Dear Jeff, Roger Penske does influence the series, but he does not control it like a puppet.  As for the non-calls on Castroneves' controversial driving at Barber and again at Long Beach, contrary to what Unser Jr. says, it certainly does make one scratch their head and say "what's up with that?"  From the sounds of it Randy Bernard is having a hard look at race control - how decisions are made and how they are communicated to the rest of us.  Mark C.

04/20/11 Al Unser Jr. recalls the instance when he punted Mario Andretti during the 1989 Long Beach Grand Prix and went on to when the second of his event-record six victories.

"It was a total accident and I didn't mean to do it, but the end result was that Mario - a three-time winner of the event - was up against the fence and I went and won the race," Unser said April 20 from Las Vegas Motor Speedway where he was watching more than a dozen Firestone Indy Lights drivers test on the 1.5-mile oval. "If we would have these rules implemented at that time, I definitely would have been called for avoidable contact."

Unser was addressing the distinction between avoidable contact and racing incidents that came to the fore during the 37th Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 17. Paul Tracy, making his IZOD IndyCar Series season debut with Dragon Racing, was sent to the back of the line as a penalty for avoidable contact during a Lap 25 incident in Turn 11 that involved the No. 78 car of Simona de Silvestro.

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04/22/11
irl

Live Chat Friday: Miller, Pruett, Tracy and Daly
Join SPEED.com's Robin Miller and Marshall Pruett, Paul Tracy, the 2003 Champ Car champion and Dreyer & Reinbold's pilot at the Indy 500, and Long Beach Firestone Indy Lights winner Conor Daly this Friday at 2 p.m. ET for what should be a Live Chat filled with fireworks.

Still curious how penalties were/weren't handed out at Long Beach? Want to get PT's take on the situation? Have a question for rising open-wheel star Conor Daly?

Join the Chat at 2 p.m. ET on Friday.

Comment
04/22/11
irl

IndyCar drivers still adjusting to double-file restarts
Row alignment didn't happen on the double-file restarts at last weekend's Izod IndyCar Series race in Long Beach, Calif., and former champion Al Unser Jr. blames the drivers.

Unser said it's clear the drivers wanted no part of a double-file start or restarts on the narrow and generally congested street circuit. The field never bunched up, as series officials instructed.

"I think the drivers took it into their own hands," said Unser, a consultant in IndyCar's competition department. "They started a little bit sooner than even what we did in past Long Beach starts.

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04/22/11
Track News

Baltimore GP preparations, utility work cause headaches
With the winter construction hiatus ended and road projects in full swing, Baltimore drivers are seeing orange — as safety cones and barrels mark many downtown roadwork sites. And thanks to a proliferation of lane closings, drivers have plenty of time to count them.

The current spate of traffic tie-ups, which are expected to continue a couple more months, are the result of a combination of utility projects and the city's continuing effort to prepare streets for a Grand Prix auto race in September.

"The bottom line is that these 'downtown projects' basically make going north and south through the center of the city impossible," said Meg Kelly of Locust Point. The triple whammy of work on Light, Charles and Howard streets has doubled the time of her 10-mile northbound commute to more than an hour, she said.

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04/22/11
autogp

Dracone from IndyCar to Auto GP with Emmebi
Francesco Dracone
Auto GP hails the arrival of both a new driver and a new team: they are Francesco Dracone and Emmebi Motorsport, the pair having found an agreement to contest the 2011 edition of the Championship together. Besides being a new-entry this is also a comeback, because both the Italian driver, the outfit and its experienced team manager Massimo Beacco have a previous experience in a Series run by Enzo Coloni: the team raced in the Euroseries 3000 in 2008 and 2009, fielding among the others Edoardo Piscopo, Fabrizio Crestani, and Dracone himself. 

Then, Francesco and the team parted ways as the Italian driver decided to try the American way in 2010, contesting some IndyCar races with Conquest and adding another important experience to a career that since 2002 saw him racing in F3 and F3000. Now they are together again, and they are looking for great results in Auto GP.

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04/22/11
Track News

Rough winter takes toll Indy Speedway road course
Indy Speedway road course to get repaved - will IndyCar race on it?
The infield section of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course will be repaved this summer in anticipation of the Red Bull Indianapolis GP MotoGP race Aug. 26-28.

The project, which will repave 1.5 miles of the circuit from Turn 5 through Turn 16, will start  June 9. Turn 5 is where the course leaves the short chute between Turns 1 and 2 of the oval. Turn 16 is where the circuit leaves the infield near the start of the front straightaway at the exit of Turn 4 of the oval.

It's the first time this section of the course has been resurfaced since it was built in 2000. Turns 1 through 4 of the 2.621-mile circuit - located inside Turn 1 of the oval - were created in 2008 for the inaugural Red Bull Indianapolis GP and will not be repaved during this project.

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04/22/11
irl

Speedway project postpones IndyCar testing
IndyCar finishes at Kentucky are usually exciting
Construction work at Kentucky Speedway has prompted a two-day IndyCar test to be canceled and pushed back a NASCAR tire test to be pushed back.

The IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights had an open test planned for May 9-10 at the track. Teams were notified about the cancellation Wednesday and told IndyCar is looking into scheduling a one-day test at a similar oval.

Goodyear invited seven NASCAR Sprint Cup teams to a May 17 test at Kentucky Speedway to confirm the tire setup for the inaugural Quaker State 400 on July 9. That tire test now will take place June 1.

Read more & Comment...
04/22/11
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Friday
  • Ralf admits son, 9, could follow wheel-tracks
  • Mercedes has fastest pit crew in F1 - report
  • Vettel's victory-finger 'annoying' - Verstappen
  • Ferrari drivers highest earners in Brazil, Spain - report

Ralf admits son, 9, could follow wheel-tracks
(GMM)  Ralf Schumacher has admitted his son could be on the road to becoming a third member of his family to win in formula one.

The Cologne tabloid Express publish photographs of 9-year-old David Schumacher, the nephew of seven time world champion Michael, at the wheel of a competitive go-kart.

Read more & Comment...
04/21/11
automotive

USA debut for the Lotus Evora S and IPS
Lotus Advisory Council Member and automotive legend Bob Lutz opened the press conference for Group Lotus today (April 21st) at the New York Auto Show. Whilst Bob spoke about the future for Lotus, the focus remained firmly on the here and now and this was perfectly demonstrated by the American debut of the stunning new Evora S and the Evora IPS (Intelligent Precision Shift) – both models showcase the versatility of the multi-award winning Evora.

Bob Lutz was joined by Lotus’ Director of Sales, Guillaume Chabin who gave an overview on the current Lotus line-up followed by Director of Motorsport Claudio Berro and Lotus KVRT Team Principal Jimmy Vasser and IndyCar driver EJ Viso.

Read more & Comment...
04/21/11
nassprint

Johnson Accepts Driver of the Year Trophy
This past weekend at the International Motorsports Hall of Fame in Talladega, NASCAR president Mike Helton and Barry Schmoyer, president of the Driver of the Year Foundation presented #48-Jimmie Johnson, the Sprint Cup's five-consecutive time champion with the 2010 Driver of the Year trophy at the International Motorsports Hall of Fame dinner.

Johnson was also presented a Tissot time piece. In its' 45th year, the Driver of the Year title is unique and the oldest award of its' type. A panel of 20 leading journalists from across the U.S. determines the winner. In quarterly voting, points are awarded on a declining 9, 6, 4,3,2,1 basis. The winning driver receives a trophy and a Tissot wristwatch. Barry Schmoyer is businessman and sportsman based in Sarasota, FL.

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04/21/11
irl

Hunter-Reay LBGP Helmet up for Auction on eBay to Benefit LIVESTRONG UPDATE A fan of Ryan's won the auction for the helmet at $10,100.00. A Nice contribution to fighting cancer and nice contribution to LIVESTRONG.   There were 70 bids.

04/21/11
Ryan Hunter-Reay's helmet to be auctioned
Indy Car Star Ryan Hunter-Reay's Long Beach Grand Prix Track worn helmet AND a Limited Edition Serigraph 'Ryan's Charge' (#28 of 60) by world renowned motorsports artist Randy Owens signed by both Ryan Hunter-Reay and Randy Owens.

One Hundred Percent (100%) of the proceeds of this auction will go to LIVESTRONG.

The helmet is a 2010 Arai GP6 made specifically for Ryan Hunter-Reay for IndyCar competition.  The helmet, as pictured, will include the driver's safety air bladder, radio cord, IndyCar technical inspection stickers as well as a certificate of authenticity signed by Ryan Hunter-Reay.  The helmet will also be signed by Ryan on request.

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04/21/11
irl

Foyt to be honored at Indy
The legendary first four-time winner of the Indianapolis 500, A.J. Foyt, will be honored Saturday, May 28 during "A.J. Foyt Day" at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Foyt's first Indianapolis victory, in 1961. Foyt also won as a driver in 1964, 1967 and 1977 and as a team owner in 1999 with Kenny Brack driving.

Houston native Foyt has participated in the Indianapolis 500 as a driver or owner for an unprecedented 54 consecutive years. He made a record 35 consecutive starts as a driver from 1958-92.

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04/21/11
automotive

Chevrolet Volt Named 2011 World Green Car
The 2011 Chevrolet Volt was named 2011 World Green Car of the Year at the New York Auto International Auto Show. 

"The selection of the Volt as the World Green Car is a further proof point of the fuel-efficient technologies that are now being offered by the Chevrolet brand around the world," said Rick Scheidt, vice president of Chevrolet marketing. "This award, and the others that have preceded it, validate the efforts of the development team to build a truly remarkable vehicle with the potential to transform transportation around the globe."

Read more & Comment...
04/21/11
Track News

Dr. Olvey joins Circuit of Americas
Dr. Steve Olvey
Circuit of the Americas has a new Director of Medical Services, Dr. Stephen Olvey, M.D. Dr. Olvey is considered one of the most distinguished experts in motor sports medicine with more than four decades of experience.

Olvey served as Director of Medical Affairs for Championship Auto Racing Teams from their inception in 1978 to 2003. He is the author of two books including Rapid Response, an autobiography of his career in motor sports medicine. He is a member of the American College of Sports Medicine’s Motor Sports Safety Task Force, is a Founding Fellow of the FIA Institute for Motor Sports Safety, serves as a Medical Consultant to the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race and is a Member of the Media Referral Network of the American College of Sports Medicine.

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04/21/11
lmes

Audi R18 is state-of-the-art
The new Audi R18
Lightweight design expertise expressed visually: This is the principle under which Audi enters the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans this year. The three Audi R18 TDI cars, which join the grid for the French endurance classic on June 11/12 and which make their first public appearance over the Easter weekend at the Le Mans test day, perfectly embodies - also visually - Audi’s core expertise in lightweight technology.

The livery of the three Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 TDI cars is dominated by puristic carbon fiber. The car of last year’s Le Mans winners carrying start number "1" even runs in the characteristic black of the extremely light and, at the same time, high-strength material, which also plays an increasingly important role in the development of new production cars.

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04/21/11
lmes

24 Hours of LeMans test day up next
The new Audi R18
The great strength of the 24 Hours of Le Mans 2011 begins coming Sunday. 54 cars will participate in this unique testing day, scheduled a month and a half before the 11th and 12th June. Here's everything you need to know about this Test Day.

 
What is the aim of the test day?
The aim of this test day is to enable entrants to come and test their cars on the big Le Mans 24-Hours circuit. As many of them that will race on 11-12 June are new following the introduction of the new technical regulations, it was necessary to organize this very special day again, sufficiently early before the race so that the teams can modify their cars afterwards if necessary.

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04/21/11
irl

Edmonton Indy preps on track
Francois Dumontier
The vast nothingness of the closed northeast corner of the downtown airport out the window behind him, Francois Dumontier sat in the empty but soon-to-open new offices of the Edmonton Indy.

Three months to the day from when the gates would be open on a new track to begin a new IndyCar future here, it was impossible to imagine or picture any of it.

The president of Octane Motorsports Events Inc. was here to put additional pieces together for the new track, located on the closed runway in the opposite corner of the airport to where the race has been held in the past.

Picture full grandstands, said Dumontier, the man who promotes and produces the F1 Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal.

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04/21/11
f1

Interview with injured Robert Kubica
Hopes of a full recovery for the injured Robert Kubica have been raised, with the Polish driver recently talking about his current condition following a serious rally accident back in February. The Krak¢w-born man suffered significant injuries on the right-hand side of his body, but he is now on the road to recovery.

The Grand Prix winner underwent surgery on numerous occasions, and is now focusing on getting back to full health without further complications. In even more positive news, Kubica is hoping to leave hospital very soon after explaining that he is improving ‘day by day’.

Robert, just over 10 weeks on from your accident - how are you feeling?

I am starting to feel a lot better now. My recovery is moving in the right direction: my strength and weight are increasing day on day and as a result I will leave the Santa Corona hospital very soon.

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04/21/11
irl

Canadians making mark felt in IndyCar
James Hinchcliffe at Long Beach
Bob Heathcote/AR1.com
One thing that came out of the IZOD IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach was that Canadian open wheel race car drivers are -- and belong -- among the top performers in North America.

How else can you explain that James Hinchcliffe, in just his second IndyCar ride, puts the No. 06 Newman Haas Racing Honda-powered Dallara a breath away from a podium finish.

His fourth place at Long Beach deserves to be celebrated.

And veteran Alex Tagliani, who bears the burden of being part of a one-car effort at Sam Schmidt Motorsports, brought home the No. 77 machine in fifth place in a field of 27. 

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04/21/11
nassprint

NASCAR Unveils '11 Schedule For Season-Ending Awards Events
NASCAR announced that its Sprint Cup Series Awards Ceremony will return to the Wynn Las Vegas in '11. The Dec. 2 event will feature the top 10 drivers in the final series standings and will culminate NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Champion's Week in Las Vegas. The combined awards banquet for the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series will be held at the Loews Miami Beach Hotel on Nov. 21, the Monday following the season-ending Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

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04/21/11
automotive

Volt Owners Go 1,000 Miles Between Fill-Ups
Steve Wojtanek in the driveway next to his Chevrolet Volt electric vehicle with extended range capabilities Tuesday April 12, 2011 in Boca Raton, Florida. Wojtanek is averaging 122 miles per gallon and visiting the gas station about once a month.
Chevrolet Volt owners made fewer trips to the gas station in March, going an average of 30 days – or nearly a month – between fill-ups. In fact, some Volt owners say they are challenging themselves to see how fuel-efficient they can be by tracking how far and how long they can go without buying gasoline.

“Volt owners drove an average of 800 miles between fill-ups since the Volt launched in December, and in March they averaged 1,000 miles,” said Cristi Landy, Volt marketing director.  “When the majority of miles driven are electrically, gas usage decreases significantly.”

“I am surprised how infrequently I go to the gas station. It’s become a game to achieve as many miles as I can in EV mode,” said Steve Wojtanek, a Volt buyer in Boca Raton, Fla. “I have made it my goal to drive as efficiently as possible and I am seeing the results, with more than 3,417 miles under my belt – of which 2,225 are EV miles.” A Volt owner since December, Wojtanek is averaging 122 miles per gallon and visiting the gas station about once a month.

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04/21/11
motogp

Motegi MotoGP race will not be replaced if it is called off
The 2011 Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi will not be replaced if organizers decide to call off the race, Carmelo Ezpeleta (CEO of MotoGP rights holders Dorna Sports) has confirmed. After the shattering effects of a tsunami in March, the likelihood of the event going ahead has been reduced due to the challenging circumstances in the country.

"We will wait for the decisions of the local promoters," Ezpeleta is quoted as saying by Gazzetta dello Sport. "But in any case, should they decide to give up the race for this year, there would be no replacement.

"A national championship race is scheduled there in July, which means that at that time the venue should be usable. By then we should be certain on what we'll do."

"I have full confidence in the Japanese and if they tell us the race can go ahead, then we'll be 1000 percent sure we'll be safe. If the situation isn't clear, I'm certain they'll be the first at evaluating the situation appropriately."

Comment
04/21/11
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Thursday
  • Peter Sauber
    Rosberg to ease disappointment with Easter triathlon
  • Vettel in Senna's league, Schumacher not - Ascanelli
  • Montezemolo admits opposition to 2013 engine plan
  • Mixed feelings for Gascoyne as Lotus targets Williams
  • 'Worst' McLaren winter in 20 years - Lowe
  • Another fatality at Brazil GP venue Interlagos
  • Sauber: “We’ve reached our first target, now we have to keep on improving.”

    Read more & Comment...
04/21/11
FormulaD

Video: 2011 Formula Drift at Long Beach


Comment
04/20/11
f1

Ticket sales ‘so far, so good’ for Edmonton IndyCar race
Considering that it was less than 10 weeks ago that the promoters of Edmonton’s resuscitated IndyCar race wheeled out its ticket campaign, sales have been humming along.

Francois Dumontier, the president of Octane Motorsports Events, figures 40 per cent of the tickets have been sold for the July 22-24 race, but did concede it will take some work to sell the next 60.

“So far, so good,” Dumontier said on Wednesday.

Among his stops in Edmonton this week was a meeting with the Chamber of Commerce and Travel Alberta.

In two weeks’ time, work will start on the new track at the City Center Airport.

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04/20/11
f1

No going back on new F1 engines says Parr
A new Formula One engine being disowned for 2013 will sound fantastic and be good for the sport however much Bernie Ecclestone dislikes it, according to Williams chairman Adam Parr. Speaking to Reuters at the Chinese Grand Prix at the weekend, Parr made clear he was a big supporter of the technology despite increasing opposition in certain quarters.

F1’s commercial supremo Ecclestone has used recent interviews to criticize the smaller “greener” 1.6 liter four-cylinder hybrid engine, expressing concern that it will sound “terrible” and alienate fans. Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo, whose company’s luxury sportscars use V8 or V12 engines, has also called for a rethink about ditching the current V8s.

Parr, whose British-based team are nine times world champions but have yet to score a point in three races so far this season, said he had a very strong view on the matter and felt it was time to speak out. “F1 is ultimately defined by its technology and F1’s constant reinvention of itself, whether it’s on the chassis side or the engine side, is fundamental to the nature of the sport,” he said.

“The people who don’t want things to change are the people who for whatever reason feel they have an incumbent advantage by not changing things.

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04/20/11
irl

Newman/Haas duo making waves
James Hinchcliffe
Bob Heathcote/AR1.com
James Hinchcliffe was having one of those "if not for bad luck …" days.

Nine laps into the first practice session of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, the carbon fiber of the No. 06 Sprott car was akin to kindling with Hinchcliffe encumbered by a six-point harness.

It was, he quipped, "like a baptism by fire."

Then, rolling out the Newman/Haas Racing back-up car for the afternoon session on the 1.968-mile, 11-turn street circuit, the Canadian driver fought "a couple of little issues." In total, Hinchcliffe got in 25 laps for the day and 69 for the three sessions over two days preceding qualifications (33 laps behind the field-high 102 of Charlie Kimball).

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04/20/11
fil

Indy Lights teams testing at Las Vegas Motor Speedway
More than a dozen Firestone Indy Lights teams converged on Las Vegas Motor Speedway's 1.5-mile oval today to test in preparation for the Oct. 15-16 NASCAR-IndyCar weekend. The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will be joined by the IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights Series. 

Sam Schmidt of Las Vegas owns four Indy Lights teams and his drivers participated in the test session. Schmidt, a former Indy Racing League driver, won the 1999 Vegas.com 500 at LVMS.

"I am ecstatic to be back here at Las Vegas Motor Speedway," Sam said. "It brings back good memories of winning the race in 1999. Coming back here on the oval is very long overdue. It's really cool to come out here and watch our cars do a 30-lap side-by-side-by-side run. Everything went smoothly just as expected with the banking here and with the grip. The grip - the downforce of our cars - will be extremely exciting for the fans. Both IndyCars and Lights will be two-and-three-wide all day long. I think it'll be a great show for the fans."

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04/20/11
nassprint

Wood Brothers to skip next three races
Trevor Bayne and the Wood Brothers team, who have planned a limited Sprint Cup schedule this year, will skip the next three Sprint Cup races and return to the track on May 21 at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the running of the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race with sponsorship from the Good Sam Club. Bayne and the Woods are guaranteed a starting spot in the All-Star race because of their victory in the season-opening Daytona 500. Wood Brothers Racing

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04/20/11
nassprint

Bill Elliott Uncertain about plans
Bill Elliott isn't sure when he'll be driving again. He started the season with Phoenix Racing and had planned to run 17 races with the team throughout 2011. But since his release from Phoenix last month, he's only qualified and started the Talladega race for #46 Whitney Motorsports. Elliott used a past champion's provisional to get the team in the race, then turned the driving duties over to J.J. Yeley during the event. "I'm taking it one day at a time," Elliott said. "I don't know [what I'll do]. I'm just kind of on the sidelines going fishing, you know what I mean? Isn’t much been happening. If you look at where the economy and stuff is, that's pretty much status quo." SceneDaily

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04/20/11
gp2

Michael Herck ends on top
For the last day of 2011 pre-season testing in Barcelona today, the thirteen teams of the GP2 paddock were greeted by a dry track. As the morning session opened, it was Lotus ART’s Jules Bianchi on new tires who set the early pace. But the Frenchman would not stay in control of the timing sheet for too long as Team AirAsia’s Luiz Razia bettered Bianchi’s lap time by 0.08s while Charles Pic slipped into P3 for Barwa Addax.

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04/20/11
f1

Ecclestone steps up denial of F1 sale reports
(GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone has stepped up his denial that Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation is heading a potential push to buy formula one.

Earlier, the F1 chief executive dismissed the rumors as "rubbish", despite widespread reports of Murdoch as well as Mexican telcom magnate Carlos Slim's interest.

He has now expanded his denial to insist F1 would not be sold to a media empire like News.

"We would not sell to a media company because it would restrict the ability to negotiate with other broadcasters," Ecclestone told The Times.

However, prior to the sale of F1's commercial rights to its current owner CVC some years ago, the sport was owned by a German media company, Kirch, which collapsed.

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04/20/11
irl

Motegi Wheels back with Tracy, Dreyer & Reinbold
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing is excited to announce a partnership with Motegi Racing for the 2011 IZOD IndyCar season.

The wheel manufacturer and marketer will be represented on the No. 22 DRR machine of Justin Wilson for the entire 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season and on Paul Tracy's No. 23 WIX Filters machine for the 100th Anniversary of the Indianapolis 500. Motegi Racing manufactures and markets purpose-built wheels for professional-level competition in drifting, rallycross and road racing, as well as available for street applications. Motegi Racing products have the perfect blend of attitude, performance and style with the latest technology and finishes.

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04/20/11
nassprint

Nominees announced for 2012 NASCAR Hall of Fame Class
NASCAR announced the list of 25 nominees for the NASCAR Hall of Fame’s third induction class to be enshrined in January 2012. From that list, five inductees will be elected by the NASCAR Hall of Fame Voting Panel, which includes a nationwide fan vote on NASCAR.COM.

Of the 25 nominees, 20 return from last year’s group. Five are first-timers: H. Clay Earles, Bobby Isaac, Cotton Owens, Les Richter and Leonard Wood.

This round of nominees, which again includes many of the sport’s legendary names, were selected by a 21-person nominating committee consisting of representatives from NASCAR, the NASCAR Hall of Fame and track owners from both major facilities and historic short tracks. The committee’s votes were tabulated by accounting firm Ernst & Young.

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04/20/11
f1

Panis: DRS too dangerous for F1
Olivier Panis (L) and Christiano da Matta in 2004 with the Toyota F1 team
Former Grand Prix winner Olivier Panis believes that Formula 1 does not require overtaking aids such as the Drag Reduction System (DRS).

“No, I don’t like it,” Panis told GPUpdate.net of DRS. “Seriously, if you want to have some overtaking like in China, you need to do it with the circuit; if you put a hairpin before a long straight, for sure you will have overtaking. But all these kinds of things, I don’t like them at all.

“Really, there are too many things for the driver to be doing on the steering wheel now. Compared with what they did before, I think it’s more dangerous and I don’t feel good about this philosophy. First he has to change gear…and also if one time the system doesn’t work it’s going to be pretty dangerous, particularly in a high-speed corner.

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04/20/11
f1

Tiago Monteiro is the voice of Lewis Hamilton's character in Cars 2
Tiago Montiero (L) with Diana Pereira
Tiago Monteiro is the voice double for the character played by former F1 world champion Lewis Hamilton in the film Cars 2, which has its theatrical release in Portugal on July 7. The Portuguese driver had a full schedule between two races.

In addition to his cinematic responsibilities, lending his voice to an emblematic character, Tiago went to France with his family at Disney's invitation to take part in the launch of some new Euro Disney attractions, and also to take part in promotional events held by SEAT, the constructor he races for in the FIA's World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). While in France, Tiago also was an active participant in an event held by his sponsor Monroe.

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04/20/11
ga

Grand Am- Changes to Fuel Cell Capacity
GRAND-AM Road Racing has announced changes to fuel cell capacity and fuel hose restrictors, with the goal of necessitating an additional pit stop for races in the Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16.  The changes will take effect at the Bosch Engineering 250 on May 14 at Virginia International Raceway.

Daytona Prototypes currently use 24-gallon fuel cells, and can race for approximately 55 minutes on a full fuel load. The new fuel cell capacity will be 20 gallons, aimed at changing the maximum time to less than 45 minutes.

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04/20/11
automotive

GM stock lower amid report of quick govt sale
A report that the US government plans to sell off much of its remaining stake in General Motors this year despite the firm's lackluster share price caused investors to flee the stock Tuesday.
After the Wall Street Journal reported a government sale could come within the next six months, GM's shares fell by nearly 1.3 percent to end at $29.59.

The government sale would "almost certainly" mean that US taxpayers would take a loss from a politically controversial $50 billion rescue of the auto giant in 2009, according to the paper.

The government would need to sell its roughly 500 million shares for $53 dollars each in order to break even, but GM's stock is currently hovering at a price of just under $30 per share.

At the current price, the government would lose more than $11 billion, but the Obama administration is willing to accept the loss in order to cut its last ties to the auto manufacturer, the newspaper said, citing unnamed sources.

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04/20/11
f1

Cosworth's Engineering Debrief: Chinese GP
The first set of back-to-back races this season offered one of the toughest challenges of the year for the engine in Malaysia, followed by one of the most straight-forward in China.
Impressive reliability for the Chinese Grand Prix registered the highest number of finishers ever to complete a Formula One race – 23 finishers – with all six Cosworth-powered cars making the checkered flag.
Race Weekend Engineering Notes
Hispania Racing has made significant progress since the opening race weekend of the season. Malaysia proved that the HRT-Cosworth F111 could comfortably qualify within the 107% rule in spite of a lack of testing, while China showed the car’s potential to compete effectively with promising race pace.
AT&T Williams showed solid reliability in China with both FW33s completing the race, albeit outside of the points. Cosworth is working closely with the team to make sure the CA2011k delivers to its full potential in close rapport with ongoing chassis developments as the team seeks a return to consistent points-scoring performances.

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04/20/11
f1

Singapore race fans can now take a 'flyer'
Race promoter Singapore GP has confirmed the integration of the Singapore Flyer into Zones 1 and 2 of the Marina Bay Street Circuit during the 2011 FORMULA 1 SINGTEL SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX.  It will allow Zone 1 and Premier Walkabout ticket-holders complete access to the Singapore Flyer grounds and the world’s largest observation wheel.

Located between the last two turns (22-23) of the Marina Bay Street Circuit, the Singapore Flyer offers views of the Pit Building and starting grid below. With a peak altitude of 165 meters above the track, the Singapore Flyer also offers panoramic views of the rest of the circuit and Singapore’s spectacular city skyline. 

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04/20/11
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Wednesday
  • Robert Kubica
    Mercedes boss Haug says di Resta 'exceptional'
  • Sauber targets Spain for Red Bull-like exhaust debut
  • Recovering Kubica to leave hospital soon
  • Nearly 150 passing moves so far in 2011 - report
  • Williams' Wolff not ruling out managerial role
  • Stewardess Branson to finally honor losing bet
  • Williams plans raft of updates for Turkey

Mercedes boss Haug says di Resta 'exceptional'
(GMM)  The latest admiration of rookie Paul di Resta's stirring early form in formula one is sparking headlines and speculation.

Norbert Haug hailed the Scot as "exceptional" after he outqualified his experienced Force India teammate Adrian Sutil at the first three races of his career.

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04/20/11
irl

Video: Centennial Moment - A.J. Foyts 4 wins at Indy


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04/20/11
irl

Video: 1991 Indy 500 Centennial Moment
Watch the battle between Michael Andretti and Rick Mears for the 1991 Indy 500.

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04/19/11
lmes

Audi will test all three R18s at Le Mans
Audi Sport Team Joest technical director Ralf Jüttner said on Monday that the team will test its three new R18 TDI cars at the upcoming 24 Hours of Le Mans Test Day on April 24.

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04/19/11
irl

Parnelli, Brack and de Ferran to drive historic cars
Parnelli Jones, Kenny Brack, Gil de Ferran and Tom Sneva round out the impressive lineup of 11 Indianapolis 500 winners who will drive iconic winning cars of the "500" during pre-race ceremonies Sunday, May 29 for the 100 th Anniversary Indianapolis 500.

1963 Indianapolis 500 winner Jones will provide one of the highlights of the day when he drives the No. 32 Marmon "Wasp" that won the inaugural Indianapolis 500 in 1911 with Ray Harroun. It will be only the third time the car has been driven on the famed IMS oval on Race Day since Harroun crossed the finish line in 1911.

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04/19/11
f1

Briatore says new F1 rules a success
Former Renault boss Flavio Briatore has labeled this year's regulations a success, claiming he has never enjoyed watching racing so much.

The Italian was always one of the main backers of radical changes to improve the show in Formula 1, and he has admitted he is pleased with what the rules have achieved so far this year.

Briatore also praised the job done by Pirelli with its tires, something he reckons is a big factor in the more exciting races seen this year.

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04/19/11
irl

Mears win Phil Hill award in Long Beach
Rick Mears receives Phil Hill award
In front of a capacity crowd of 400 guests at the RRDC Evening with Roger Penske presented by Firestone in Long Beach, Calif., Rick Mears received the 2011 Phil Hill Award from Hill's widow Alma and son Derek. The event was the third annual Road Racing Drivers Club's West Coast banquet, held prior to the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach and emceed by RRDC president Bobby Rahal.

The Phil Hill Award has been presented annually since 1993 to the person who the RRDC feels has rendered outstanding service to road racing. The recipient may be a driver, entrant or outstanding member of a sanctioning body.

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04/19/11
nassprint

RCR and Caterpillar Renew Partnership on No. 31 Chevrolet
Richard Childress Racing and Caterpillar have reached agreement to continue their partnership on the No. 31 Chevrolet which began with the 2009 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.

Jeff Burton, driver of the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, has also reached agreement on a multi-year contract extension with RCR. The South Boston, Va., native made his RCR debut August 22, 2004, at Michigan International Speedway driving the No. 30 Chevrolet (started 28th, finished 12th).

"We are very pleased to continue our relationship with Richard Childress Racing and Jeff Burton," said Bill Finerty, Vice President of Americas Distribution Services Division for Caterpillar. "Cat Dealers, customers and employees all take pride in watching the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet compete at a high level in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series."

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04/19/11
gp2

Davide Valsecchi leads the way
Davide Valsecchi
The GP2 Series paddock gathered this week at Circuit de Catalunya for the final 2011 pre-season testing. The thirteen teams have two days to prepare before the opening round in Istanbul in three weeks time.

Sunshine and a dry track welcomed the twenty-six cars this morning. The first half hour of the session was pretty quiet as drivers took to the track in order to complete installation laps. Julian Leal was the first one to set a lap time for Rapax, but it was Jolyon Palmer at Arden International who set the early pace.

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04/19/11
motogp

Pedrosa medical condition getting better
Dani Pedrosa’s medical condition was assessed in Barcelona once again on Monday, with the Repsol Honda rider hoping for a positive return to the track at Estoril next weekend.

“The truth is that it went well and in the days that have followed I’ve adjusted my routine to the recommendations made by the medical team, so that the recovery goes as well as it possibly can,” Pedrosa wrote in a Monday blog.

“I had a routine medical check and it seems that things are going well, although we have to be cautious until I get back on the bike in Portugal.

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04/19/11
irl

Video: Long Beach GP IndyCar Highlights


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04/19/11
nassprint

Two records tied at Talladega
Sunday's Aaron's 499 at Talladega Superspeedway tied two Sprint Cup Series records - number of lead changes and closest margin of victory. There were 88 lead changes at the start/finish line, tying an all-time NASCAR record set in last season's April event at Talladega. The final lead change occurred on the last lap - eight of the last 12 Talladega races featured a last-lap lead change. Jimmie Johnson edged Clint Bowyer by 0.002 seconds, which matches the closest margin of victory since the inception of electronic scoring in May 1993. That mark was originally set at Darlington Raceway on March 16, 2003, with Ricky Craven beating Kurt Busch. Since 1993, every race at Talladega finishing under green - 29 in all - has had a MOV under .400 seconds. Passing numbers - for the lead and otherwise - also were high. There were 159 green flag passes for the lead all around the race track, with a total of 11,025 green flag passes throughout the field. NASCAR PR

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04/19/11
nassprint

Drivers testing at Richmond for Denny Hamlin Showdown
Race fans in Richmond who can't wait for NASCAR to return are in luck. Several NASCAR drivers are making an early return to Richmond International Raceway this Wednesday, April 20, before the April 28-30 Spring NASCAR Race Weekend. They are testing in preparation for the Thursday, April 28 Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown. Denny Hamlin, Hermie Sadler, Martinsville Speedway president Clay Campbell, Curtis Markham and Jason White are confirmed to hit the track Wednesday from noon to 6:00 p.m. Grandstands are free and open to the public by accessing Gate 70.

The fourth annual Denny Hamlin Short Track Showdown makes its debut at Richmond International Raceway on Thursday, April 28. The race features many NASCAR drivers, including Hamlin, Tony Stewart, Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne, Michael Waltrip, Joey Logano, Travis Pastrana and Trevor Bayne, battling with some of the best Late Model drivers in the area.

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04/19/11
nassprint

Gilliland to Drive Gander Mountain #34 for Front Row Motorsports at Richmond
David Gilliland
For the second time in the 2011 race season, Gander Mountain is excited to announce that the outdoor retailer will be the primary sponsor of Front Row Motorsports' (FRM) Sprint Cup entry. The Gander Mountain No. 34 Ford Fusion will appear at Richmond International Raceway on Saturday, April 30, piloted by veteran NASCAR driver David Gilliland.

Gander Mountain returns as a racing sponsor for the third season due to the number of NASCAR fans who also enjoy hunting, fishing and camping, according to Steve Uline, Gander Mountain's executive vice president of marketing. "David Gilliland is an avid outdoorsman, as are many NASCAR fans," he said. "An appearance in this race and a chance to promote Gander Mountain's on-line firearms store on the No. 34 car fits perfectly with the number of avid hunters who will enjoy the action under the lights in Richmond."

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04/19/11
automotive

Maserati at 2011 Shanghai Auto Show
Click to watch video
Click photo to watch video
Asian debut at the Shanghai Auto Show for the GranTurismo MC Stradale. The fastest, lightest and most powerful car in the Maserati model line-up makes its Chinese debut at the Shanghai Motor Show today.

The introduction of the MC Stradale to the Chinese market so soon after its global launch is indicative of China's growing importance to the Modena-based Italian company. Maserati registered more than 400 sales in China in 2010, with the best-selling Quattroporte accounting for 60 percent of the total.

Demand for the Quattroporte in China was so strong in 2010 that it became the large luxury sedan's second-biggest market worldwide, after the U.S.

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04/19/11
racing News

Who Works in Motorsports 2011 edition now available
Successful communication is often about targeting the right people. For the past seven years, industry professionals and media have been doing just that thanks to the unique concept of Who Works in Motorsports, the indispensible index of motorsport information from around the world.

In addition to its recently launched sister publication Who Works in Formula One, 2011’s edition of Who Works in Motorsports covers 15 of the world’s biggest championships: ALMS, Eurocup FR 2.0, F1, FIA GT1, ILMC, Clio Eurocup, IndyCar, Le Mans Series, Megane Trophy, NASCAR Sprint Cup, Superleague Formula, V8 Supercars, WRC, World Series FR3.5 & WTCC.

Time waits for no man in this fast-paced business, but at least with Who Works in Motorsports 2011 keeping up to speed with the sport’s latest changes is easy.

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04/19/11
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Tuesday
  • F1 no longer a sprint in 2011
  • Alonso still happy with Ferrari - Briatore
  • Ferrari working to fix wind tunnel problem

F1 no longer a sprint in 2011
(GMM)  Last year's refueling ban combined with the crumbling Pirelli tires of 2011 have transformed grands prix from sprints into Le Mans-style endurance events.

"It's no longer enough to have the fastest car or the best driver, you have to get to the end of the races in a position to keep fighting or defend your position," veteran engineer Joan Villadelprat wrote in his latest column for El Pais.

McLaren's Lewis Hamilton broke championship leader Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull's stranglehold in China by concentrating all weekend on conserving tires for the race and devising the best pit strategy.

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04/19/11
f1

Can Austin track survive loss of $25 million? UPDATE (GMM)  $25 million in state funding for F1's new US grand prix in Austin is in doubt.

The Texas State Senate's finance committee has voted 10-4 to pull the package to assist the development of the under-construction Circuit of the Americas, local KXAN news reports.

"At a time when people are stressed about their schools, stressed about their jobs, stressed about health care and nursing homes, for us to check off $25 million for race cars, I think we make people say where are their priorities," senator Dan Patrick said.

"That $25 million would pay for 500 teacher salaries," he added.  "How can we explain to people we're spending that money on race cars?"

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